Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Photos Don't Lie: Part Deux

I threatened to post some pics awhile back but my insecurities got the best of me.  Now that I am unofficially 12 pounds down I am, actually, even LESS willing to do so.  Why?  Because I feel like I've been working my ass off and don't really look that different.  A few people have commented on how they can see it in my face (thank you friends!) and one of my sweet daughters recently said 'I can tell your boobs are smaller." (really?) but all in all I don't see much of a change.  

But I realized I had to get over my shame real quickly when Hyam had a photographer in the studio a few weeks ago taking pics for her website and an ad in a local publication.  As incredible as she is (check her out here)  - she couldn't hide the fact that I am, well,  still fat.  It was tough to look at - really tough.  Hyam did remind us to look at how strong we are and to be proud of what we're doing - which I am -  but I can't deny that it was nearly impossible to get my eyes to move past the huge ring around my stomach.

So, since the photos are going to be public I thought I'd fess up to the truth now.  Photos don't lie, right?  Below you'll find a few chronological photos from the past few years to the past few months.  There is truly only about 1 photo of me for every 200 we have in our files because 1) I'm always behind the camera and 2) I've not wanted to be in any pictures because of my weight.  I'm trying to let go of the second one, but it's not easy.

July 2008
Despite the obvious I was in major denial about my weight until I saw how awful I looked in this photo.  I was mortifed when we got back from this trip and saw it staring back at me.  How had I not seen this in the mirror?

July 2009
Nothing like standing next to your gorgeous, skinny family to remind you of how fat you are! I lost a few pounds before this trip - knowing I'd have to be with them - but my priorities got out of whack not too long after our return - and so did my weight.

April 2010 
So let me first say that this picture is horrendous and makes me look even worse than I really looked at the time.  I used it here because - how could I not?  I look like a beast.  It's one year later and I've managed to not just gain everything back but to actually exceed my former max capacity.  It was this vacation that finally got me thinking about true change.  (And no, I'm not passed out, just taking a little nap on the beach...with a margarita in my hand...)
May 2010 
I met Hyam shortly after that last beach trip.  About one month later I am 5 pounds down.  I appear very happy about it in this picture - and I am.  I'm feeling good, sleeping and can see changes already.

July 2010
10 pounds down. Though the pounds aren't falling off quite as quickly as I'd like them to I see and feel changes every day.  I'm still big, but a little smaller - and much stronger - than I was just a few months ago.  Interesting how photos can show you not only how far you've come, but also how far you have to go...

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Ice Cold Milk and...

...and an Oreo Cookie.... Which  I just ate like 5 of!  Ugh!  What was I thinking?  Where did they even come from? I don't know how they got here, but there they were -on the counter taunting me "Eat us....eat us...we're so sweet and yummy and delicious..."

How can something so completely artificial taste so good? Ok, maybe the word "good" is giving a bit too much credit to the little chocolate demons, but when you have a sweet tooth like mine and you're trying to eliminate stuff like this you can get pretty desperate - and who can argue with childhood memories? 

But it's such a complete waste of calories that I was so fully overcome with guilt shoving them in my mouth that I didn't even enjoy them!  Usually I'm of the thought that if you're going to blow it on something sugar-laden and calorie packed you should go all out - eat the real deal - like a cupcake from Cappellinos or an amazing cookie from my friend Kelly's new cookie company.  You enjoy it thoroughly and then get right back on track (and tell Hyam so she makes you pay for it the next day in class!). You DO NOT waste those calories on fake, processed, junk! 

But I did it, didn't I?  And yes, I'm feeling completely remorseful (not to mention a little queasy) afterward.  Damn Oreos.  

Monday, July 19, 2010

Snap, Crackle, Pop

Getting old was one of the few things was afraid of in my youth (in addition to flamingos and dead bodies - but you will have to ask my sister about those). When I say old I mean O-L-D - as in your grandparents age - not the big 4-0 (which is right around the corner for me). 

I distinctly remember freaking out on my 25th birthday about how "old" I was. I somehow had the nerve to express this to my friend Janet (who happens - to this day - be one of my strongest supporters).  As rude as it was for me to whine about my "old age" to someone who was, in actuality, a few years older than me, it turned out to be a good thing because the conversation that followed changed my life. 

Janet said that she actually enjoyed her recent birthday's because she felt like she was in a really good place - happily married, two great kids, good job, etc. She didn't have the insecurities of being a teenager anymore - nor the struggles of trying to prove herself as a 20-something.  Though I doubt I ever told her this - that conversation meant the world to me - thanks Janet! 

On the other hand, that this whole "getting back into shape thing" has caused me to doubt my acceptance of my age quite a few times.  When did my body get so damn old?  

It seems like every few days I wake up with a new ache or pain.  My shin splints are ever present, but seem to rear up every time I even think about running more than a few miles.  My knees, which have been one of the few parts of my body I never injured as a young athlete, snap and crackle like a bowl full of Rice Krispies whether I'm squatting at the studio or just getting up from the dinner table (no "pops" yet, thank goodness!).  And my hip flexors have started what Laura and I call "hingeing"  - sticking painfully like the hinge on an old door!  

This is the price I pay for neglecting my body for so many years. My faith (which I don't talk a lot about here, but is something I rely heavily on) is telling me to trust and I'll get through it (with a little help from Ibuprofen, Naproxen, and a martini or two!).  But sometimes I just want to shout "I get it, God, now will you give me a break?!" 

Friday, July 16, 2010

Craziness Has It's Perks

So here's the unforseen perk of letting your weight loss goals and struggles be known to the world - people want you to succeed!  They celebrate your little victories with you, send you e-mails supporting you and - best of all - make an effort to tell you how great you look. Seriously, there's no bigger ego boost to a fat girl on a diet than someone noticing your efforts (especially when you've only lost 10 pounds!).  

Would this be happening if they weren't aware of every little detail about what I'm doing?  Probably not, but I don't think it really matters.  We all love hearing that what we're doing is worthwhile.  Whether it's work - weight loss - school - or whatever you may be working at - we all enjoy having our efforts validated.  (Especially me - thanks everyone!) 

Renewal: Part 2

I had dinner (it was healthy, I promise - the Summer Solstice Salad from Beer Run - spinach, apples, beets and maybe a little goat cheese) the other night with two women I met via the Twitter.  I know it sounds creepy, but it isn't, I promise.

As owner/writer/editor of a website that does it's business almost completely on-line social media - namely Twitter and Facebook - are an integral part of my livelihood.  So much so that I even do a segment on the local news called C'ville Plugged In about it!  So it doesn't surprised me that I am continually meeting people that I "know" on-line but have never truly met in person.  I have, however,  been surprised (and pleased!) by how many of these people have become not only business connections, but true friends.  

For four hours this evening Terry, Bobbi (who had just met both Terry and I in person for the first time that night!) and I slowed our conversation only when our laughter prohibited us from speaking in full sentences. I left the restaurant several hours later than I had anticipated but despite the fact that it was "past my bedtime," I left feeling completely renewed and refreshed.  Ironically, Terry was thinking the same thing - and she wrote a fabulous post on her blog Scribblings of a Soccer Mom about it.  (FYI - she's a fabulous writer - so don't be afraid to scroll down and read what else she has to say). 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Renewal: Part 1

I'm not going to lie to you...every Tuesday and Thursday morning I wake up with butterflies in my stomach - the words "I don't want to do this" usually running through my head. After dragging myself out of bed I reluctantly put my workout clothes on and head to the kitchen. I woefully add whey powder to my greek yogurt (which already tastes like chalk) because I know that without some protein there's no way I'm going to make it through the work out....and I seriously cannot look at another egg.  

Thirty minutes later I am in the car driving frantically to the studio (because I stopped to check my e-mail before heading out the door and am now late) while sucking down as much water as possible - hydration is key in this process, too.  Once parked I sit the car for an extra thirty seconds and tell myself, "It will be great." Though I usually don't believe it.

When I step into the studio, however, all of that trepidation disappears. Surely it has something to do with the lighting, the colors, the floors, etc. that Hyam chose so carefully when she was designing the space, but mostly it has to do with the fact that the studio - with all it's torturous looking contraptions, balls, weights, ropes, etc. - has become my haven.  It's where I go to rid myself of the stress, anger, frustrations of the week - as well as those extra calories I know I shouldn't have taken in. When I walk in the door I see the women I spend every Tuesday and Thursday with - working together to better ourselves inside and out.  They inspire me - they push me- and they lift me up. What was I so afraid of?

Fifty-five minutes later I am red-faced, hot, sweaty, in desperate need of a shower and...completely renewed.  What takes place between that first squat and last quad stretch can surely be attributed to more than one scientific theory, but what it comes down to for me is that it works.